“Kite” is the 2014 film adaptation of the anime film (OVA) by Yasuomi Umetsu, “Kite” (1998). It made its premiere in the ongoing Fantasia Film Festival on July 18, 2014. It will premiere on DirecTV on Aug. 28, 2014 and will have a limited theatrical release on Oct. 10, 2014. The film will also be available on iTunes on the same day. “Kite” comes from Anchor Bay Entertainment and is directed by Ralph Ziman. Itstars India Eisley, Samuel L. Jackson and Callan McAullife. According to Rotten Tomatoes, this movie has been rated R for strong bloody violence throughout, grisly images and contains drugs and sexual content. Read further to learn more about this story.
“Kite” Movie Synopsis:
“Kite,” set in a dystopic, post-financial crisis city, tells the story of an orphaned teenage school girl assassin named Sawa, portrayed by India Eisley (“The Secret Life of an American Teenager”). With the help of Karl Aker (Samuel L. Jackson), a detective and former partner of Sawa’s father, she sets out on a crusade for revenge against the Emir, the ringleader of a human trafficking cartel, who she believes is responsible for her parents’ death. However, along the way, she meets a fellow assassin named Oburi (Callan McAullife), who claims to know more than she knows about her parent’s deaths.
“Kite” Movie Review:
The original controversial one-hour long OVA by Yasuomi Umetsu had a cult following ever since its release in 1998. Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Bill” was very much influenced by “Kite,” as can be seen in his movies, most especially in Chiaki Kuriyama’s schoolgirl assassin, Gogo Yubari. However, there are some differences between the original and the film adaptation, such as the fact that in the original film, Sawa was a victim of human exploitation. In this version, she’s a vigilante that goes against it. However, Sawa still uses the same special weapon that has become her trademark — specialized bullets that cause the victims to explode.
“Kite” is still set for a limited theatrical release in October 2014, but most of the reviews of its premier at the Fantasia Film Festival in Montreal, have been negative. According to Peter Debruge, Variety’s Chief International Film Critic, the one reason why this film does not truly stand out is because that this formula — teenage girl turns vigilante and fights for justice — has been used before and is not at all new. Over the past few years, female characters have taken on this kind of formula, and some of them have also been set in a dystopian world. We have had Jennifer Lawrence’s Katniss Everdeen from “The Hunger Games,” Saorise Ronan’s Hanna from “Hanna,” Emily Browning’s Babydoll from “Sucker Punch” and Chloe Grace Moretz’s Hit-Girl from “Kick Ass” to name a few. Unfortunately, India Eisley’s Sawa is a few years too late.
However, what the film does promise its viewers with the same level of violence for fans of the original film. However, those who are not familiar with the OVA will find the gritty film jam-packed with violence, shoot outs and fights. This does not bode well for the film, which already only has a limited theatrical release, and will premiere on DirecTV in August 2014.
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Photo Source: Wikimedia Commons/pinguino k
Check out the trailer for “Kite” below.